Outcome INTERDEM Academy Publication Award 2022-2023

This year, in total, eight articles were received as part of the INTERDEM Academy Publication Award. We want to thank and compliment everyone for the effort they put into their submission. The top 3 (winner and 2 runner-up) will receive a monetary price to be used to stimulate career development, and the winner is invited to present the article during our next Annual INTERDEM meeting (Helsinki, 16 Oct 2023). 

Congratulations to the winners! We would like to thank Dr Georgina Charlesworth, Dr René Thyrian, Dr Hannah Christie and Dr Eithne Heffernan for contibuting to this year’s jury and providing us with their careful considerations and final ranking.

1. Winner of this year’s award:

Joost Wammes – Dyadic Discrete Choice Experiments Enable Persons with Dementia and Informal Caregivers to Participate in Health Care Decision Making: A Mixed Methods Study

Joost Wammes says:

“Discrete choice experiments (DCEs) are an increasing popular and effective tool to identify client care preferences. Eliciting individual and dyadic care preferences from persons with dementia and informal caregivers is an exciting new area of research. In DCEs, participants decide between two or more hypothetical scenarios presented in multiple sequential options. Trade-offs between the scenarios should be made based on the relative utility of a range of characteristics named attributes and corresponding attribute levels. DCEs can be applied to evaluate preferences for a broad range of health-decisions such as new policies, services, or interventions. Additionally, DCEs can incorporate willingness to pay, which can inform on the maximum price users are willing to pay.

In this article we combined a health economics application with qualitative research so persons with dementia and informal caregivers can increase their participation in health care decision-making. The aim of this study was determining the best approaches to enable individual and joint DCE research in persons with dementia and informal caregivers. We tested DCE survey designs, choice task constraints, and in-person mode of DCE administering. Study results provided evidence on how best to include persons with dementia and informal caregivers in DCEs, creating a state-of-the-art dementia friendly dyadic DCE design.

By actively involving people with dementia and informal caregivers in DCEs, we enable them to be included in the creation or evaluation of interventions and policies, ultimately fostering its quality by tailoring it to their specific needs and preferences.

This article was written by Joost Wammes, who is a PhD candidate at the Amsterdam University Medical Centers, the Netherlands. Co-authors include Joffre Swait, Esther de Bekker-Grob, Joan Monin, Nanon Labrie, and Janet MacNeil-Vroomen.

To read the full article: Dyadic Discrete Choice Experiments Enable Persons with Dementia and Informal Caregivers to Participate in Health Care Decision Making: A Mixed Methods Study (freely available at the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease)

2. Runner-up (in alphabetical order)

Federica D’AndreaObject Handling for People With Dementia: A Scoping Review and the Development of Intervention Guidance

Federica D’Andrea says:

“I was delighted to hear that I have been selected for the 2022-2023 INTERDEM publication award! The publication I had submitted is a review of object handling interventions for people with dementia. This research was undertaken as part of my PhD focused on the development and design of a novel theory- and evidence-based multi-sensory intervention for people with dementia living in care homes, including thematic boxes with olfactory stimuli and heritage items. I am very grateful for the input of all co-authors Professor Tom Dening and Professor Victoria Tischler. One year since this research, I am currently a lecturer in Dementia Studies at the Geller Institute of Ageing and Memory, University of West London, where I continue my research into multi-sensory approaches in dementia care, with specific interest in olfaction (smell).

The review reveals there are a relatively small number of studies identified under the term ‘object handling’ and they varied considerably in their designs and methodologies. To enhance consistency in study design and reporting, the concept of object handing was reviewed, and a theoretical understanding of its components and likely domains of action was developed. It is suggested that object handling includes three essential components: presenting, receiving, and responding.

In line with the INTERDEM mission, this research lays the groundwork for creating a common terminology across studies, encouraging future studies to examine and assess the complexity of object handling intervention, and the mechanisms by which it may exert its beneficial effects. In turn, this will support the development of appropriate methodology to investigate its impacts.

Furthermore, this research provides valuable insights and recommendations for implementing object handling interventions in practice, contributing to the goal of promoting and improving the care and quality of life of people with dementia, which is at the heart of the INTERDEM mission.

To read the full article: D’Andrea, F., Dening, T., & Tischler, V. (2022). Object handling for people with dementia: A scoping review and the development of intervention guidance. Innovation in Aging, 6(5), igac043 (https://academic.oup.com/innovateage/article/6/5/igac043/6607774)”

Maarten Houben –  Designing for Everyday Sounds at Home with People with Dementia and their Partners

Maarten Houben says:

“Listening to music is well-known to elicit positive reactions in people with dementia. However, music is only a small part of the sounds we perceive in our everyday lives. Non-musical sounds also strongly influence people’s feelings, emotions, and behavior. For example, nature sounds, such as birdsongs or sea waves, can make people feel calm and relaxed. However, we still do not fully understand how everyday sounds benefit people with dementia. In my PhD research, I addressed the untapped potential of everyday sounds in enriching the lived experiences of dementia. My PhD research was part of the ‘Everyday Sounds of Dementia’ project funded by the ZonMw Create Health program.

This paper reports parts of a one-year co-design study in which I closely involved three couples to co-design an accessible audio player to experience personal everyday sounds. I engaged in direct and personal contact with the participants to gain a broad understanding of the everyday situations of the participants. While people with dementia are often excluded from the design process, this paper demonstrates how design artefacts provoke input on abstract ideas and concepts.

The outcome of these participatory sessions was the Tumbler: a sound player that empowers people with dementia and their partners to engage in reminiscence and social activities at home. In line with the INTERDEM mission, this paper highlighted the potential for social activities in home situations to counteract unrest or boredom and strengthen the social connection between people with dementia and their families. The findings revealed how everyday sounds support conversations, evoke memories of shared experiences and re-establish social connections.

On May 1st, I started as an Assistant Professor at the Department of Industrial Design at the Eindhoven University of Technology where I will continue my research on multisensory technologies and participatory design approaches to support vulnerable users in sensitive settings, such as people with dementia. I look forward to start new collaborations and connect with other members of the INTERDEM community!

To read the full article:

Maarten Houben, Rens Brankaert, Gail Kenning, Inge Bongers, and Berry Eggen. 2022. Designing for Everyday Sounds at Home with People with Dementia and their Partners. In Proceedings of the 2022 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI ’22). Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, USA, Article 514, 1–15. https://doi.org/10.1145/3491102.3501993

On behalf of Georgina Charlesworth, PhD, chair of the jury committee

It has been a pleasure to read the short-listed entries to the INTERDEM Academy publication award. Particularly notable features for this year’s finalists, aside from the variety that the jury has become come to expect, has been the new methodologies developed by the early career researchers and the significant involvement of people living with dementia and their supporters. We have had some impressive submissions in terms of new methodologies, ‘big data’ and global reach, and each paper has its own strengths. The jury would like to provide an honorable mention to Emel Yorganci, Patterns of unplanned hospital admissions among people with dementia: from diagnosis to the end of life, as this article presents an original way of involving people with dementia; it is a great illustration of involving PwD and supporters in a ‘big data’ project.